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The world through my eyes - Mozambique
The World Through My Eyes
Address in Mozambique:
The World Through My Eyes
c/o Albertina Remane
Chókwè, Gaza COP12100
Email the photographers:
Address in United States:
The World Through My Eyes
c/o Blake Schmidt, Project Leader
4534 SW 27th
Portland, OR 97239 USA
Aims & objectives
The World Through My Eyes helps Mozambican children
learn about and experiment with photography, improving their chances
of receiving scholarships at a university either in Mozambique
Do you remember your first camera... taking
your first pictures and seeing the results? Photographs record
moments in everyday
life: from a five-year-old child's birthday, to national leaders
signing a peace accord. A photograph can change the world or at
least one's perspective of it. The captured image is a powerful
tool that influences the way we think and look at life.
culture and many of its traditions in music, entertainment and
food are being lost or changed by hip-hop, DVDs and Coca-Cola.
Photography can be used to preserve culture and traditions by recording
the present for future generations. Photography in Mozambique is
underdeveloped and underutilized and similarly is an important
skill capable of opening doors to one's future.
The World Through My Eyes was created in 2003 to enrich the lives
of Mozambican children. The U.S. Embassy in Maputo, Mozambique
helped fund the first phase of the project, which was completed in April
The main goal of The World Through My Eyes, during the first phase,
was to expose young Mozambicans to photography and see if they
had the aptitude to excel. Participants had access to photographic
equipment and learned basic photography. They produced their own
photography portfolios, received a program certificate, ten of
their photos in an album and a photo CD. In addition to short-term
enrichment and exposure to the creativeness learned through artistic
endeavors, participants learned photography, which is a useful
skill. This first phase proved that photography is of value and
interest to Mozambicans and was well received both by those who
partook in the project and those who attended the two gallery showings.
The website also received critical acclaim. Many people mentioned
the importance of photography in capturing everyday Mozambican
activities to record them for future generations and share them
with people around the world. This preservation and sharing of
culture is one of the great benefits of this project.
The long-term goal of The World Through My Eyes is to create a
permanent photography school for young Mozambicans. Currently,
photography is not being taught at Mozambique's journalism institute.
Annually less than twenty people study at the Center for the Formation
of Photographers, the only photography school in Mozambique. There
is a need for more opportunity to learn photography, especially
for Mozambican youth. Most people don't have the money to buy books
of photographs, see exhibitions or take non-essential photos. Music,
dance and painting are the three most popular art forms in Mozambique.
Photography has the potential to join this group.
the first phase may continue in the second if they chose to and over time other
interested youth will be selected
to join this group. As time goes by we foresee students working
at progressive levels. A new idea is to train selected students,
who have been with the project for a time, to work as volunteer
aids in teaching others. Over time those selected will possibly
become staff members.
Involvement of children
participating in this project are all underprivileged
and a number of them are orphans. Young orphans in Mozambique
find themselves in bleak situations. With few basic rights,
they are often forced to abandon their studies and live on
Many turn to child prostitution to survive and have little
to look forward to. This project aims to provide these children
an opportunity they likely would not have otherwise, to own
a camera and begin
to learn how to become a professional photographer.
Presently the project leader is living with his
family in Portland, Oregon. He is promoting the project, searching
for funding and looking into making this project a non-profit and
possibly partner with an existing group or NGO in the States or
Mozambique. The project assistant is in Chókwè still
teaching primary school and studying at night. He is taking computer
courses to become more knowledgeable and proficient with computers.
The participants are continuing their regular studies and are anxiously
waiting to continue with the project assistant, on an interim basis,
once he finishes his computer studies. He will work with the children
during the weekends to keep their skills sharp.
The project needs money to be able to continue and become the
permanent photography school that we envision. To help you can
go to the “How to Help” section or visit the sales
Other help you can give is to tell
a friend about the project website or email
project participants to talk with them about their
work. The goal is to recommence the project in early 2005.
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